News Archive

Faculty & Staff Blog

List of 10 news stories.

  • Fort Worth Academy Teacher Bret Hendrickson Presenting at Perot Museum’s ‘Wild World’ Event for Adults

    On Friday evening, January 25, 2019, Fort Worth Academy Teacher Bret Hendrickson will speak about his extreme hobby of chasing severe storms at “Wild World,” a special event for adults only at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Dallas.
    “The audience will learn what it takes to do this hobby, how I got started in it, how it has become a passion of mine, and how they can get started with it,” Mr. Hendrickson said. “I'll also tell a few stories about narrow escapes that I've had while chasing.”
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  • Fort Worth Academy: The Leader in Project-Based Learning

    Shannon Elders, Head of School
    I was fortunate enough years ago to participate in an intensive two-day professional development workshop led by Dr. Marc Chun. At the time Dr. Chun was the director of education and a research scientist with the Council for Aid to Education. The purpose of the workshop was to explore and develop true authentic learning experiences and assessments that measured students’ learning based on skills deemed necessary for success in the 21st century. We discussed performance tasks and how to use them rather than a typical “test”, where information is memorized and quickly forgotten, or learned at such a superficial level there is little to no future application.
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  • What It Really Means to Have a Growth Mindset

    Shannon Elders, Head of School
    I have been fascinated with the philosophy and science behind growth mindset since I was introduced to the idea in 2007. It, in my opinion, was the key to helping students overcome obstacles and not be intimidated by challenging work. Years ago, Carol Dweck, the Lewis and Virginia Eaton Professor of Psychology at Stanford University and author of the book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, and a team of her graduate students completed a study regarding the effect of praise on mindsets.

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  • Wildlife Wonderings

    Megan Davis McConnell, Academy Parent and Licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator

    As new members to the Fort Worth Academy community, my family thanks you all so much for the warm welcome we have received as Merril and Nancy began their adventures as Trailblazers this week.  The campus is so wonderful, complete with, my favorite, native Texas Wildlife.  The "campus coyotes" are a treat to see this week and I know very well that their presence has caused excitement, wonder and maybe a little concern.  Your staff and facilities manager are aware of the coyote presence and they are handling the issue with great care and attention.
    When wildlife comes around  and very close to people, it is because the habitat is attractive and includes food.  When the food resource is removed, the wildlife will generally move on.    It is very cold this week and the coyotes are looking for food.  We believe that the construction site south of campus is a food fest as the workers are not controlling their food waste. Any unsecured trash is an invitation for opportunistic wildlife, including predators.
    The best judgment is to not approach the coyotes as they are wild animals. They should not approach people as they are very shy to noise and activity. Our campus coyotes are very healthy critters and pose no threat to our children as they continue play outside. 
    Please don't feed or try to pet the coyotes! I know they are fluffy and pretty.
    Your campus manager and I have already communicated about the issue and the Texas Parks and Wildlife will receive a sitings report. Please inform the office if you notice more brazen behavior by the coyotes. ( other than a siting).
    For your coyote curiosity, please find attached an article published in a Parker county magazine that will help to dispel myths and allay concerns. And if you have any more questions or which to talk more about native Texas wildlife, please do not hesitate to reach out to me at 817-235-4096 and
    You may also find much information at for resources regarding wildlife conflicts and how to locate a wildlife rehabilitator should you find an injured or sick animal.
    Thank you again to the Academy for the welcome to your special community.
    Are you Coyote Curious?
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  • A Strong Foundation for High School and Beyond

    John Shipp, Academy Class 2013

    Faculty, Parents, and Students.

    I was honored when Mr. Broderick asked me to attend today’s ceremony. Five short years ago, I was sitting in one of your seats listening to a speaker congratulate me on my induction into the National Junior Honor Society. Four years ago, as President, I participated in the induction of the candidates. No matter where one sits in this room, it is a thrilling moment for you and your family, and I congratulate you.

    I have many fond memories of my nine years at FWA. From the first, I knew FWA was my school because it was the only kindergarten open house that served homemade brownies. As Mr. Broderick mentioned, the Idler’s concert was a great memory as were standing on the stage singing “Happy Grandparent’s Day” to my grandparents, and performing as Captain Hook in Peter Pan. Most of these great memories center around my family and the great FWA teachers (Mr. Porter, Mrs. Rice, Mr. Hendrickson, Mrs. Menzel, Mrs. Uhr, and many others) who prepared me for the future.  
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  • The “L” in ELI Entrepreneurship, Leadership, & Innovation

    The Class of 2017
    During U.S. History class, 8th graders learned about the Constitution and our electoral process. They researched a variety of issues and created their own political parties and political campaigns.
    How do leadership, the election, social media and digital footprints connect?  At the Academy, we know social media can play a significant role in our everyday lives, including our experiences during a presidential election season.

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  • Real World Science

    Lauren Parker, 7th & 8th grade Science teacher, Academy Alumni
    Quick! When was the last time you calculated kinetic energy? What about listing each bone in the body? I bet you had to do that this week, didn’t you? No? What about naming and locating the organs of a frog? I know you’ve done that recently, right? OK. What about this: when was the last time you had to solve a problem? Work as part of a team? Make an informed decision?

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  • An Exciting Baton Exchange

    Margie Lane, 2nd Grade Teacher
    The sharing of ideas with a new teaching partner can be filled with high enthusiasm and excitement just like the passing of a baton in a running relay race. I’ve been blessed with my teacher partners over the years and have always learned many things from them. This year, my teammate is the wonderful Mrs. Sara Kooiman, who took off quickly with our baton and hasn’t looked back.
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    Bill Broderick, Head of School
    "Our hearts still ache."  These words were spoken by President Obama during a 9/11 memorial service two years ago.  Indeed, for those of us for whom the events of that tragic day exist as part of our experience, our hearts will ache for the rest of our lives as we remember where we were and what was happening to us on September 11, 2001.
    Across the northeast, September 11 began as a beautiful, blue-skied, crisp, late summer morning.  It was a similar kind of morning in Fort Worth, too.  Just a little warmer.
    Shortly after 8:00 AM, I was doing what I do every morning - opening car doors and welcoming smiling young faces for another day of learning at the Academy - early in the academic year.  As former art teacher, Trish Wise, strode across the parking lot toward the front door I noticed she was crying, and her face was ashen.  It was Trish who told me that an airplane had crashed into the World Trade Center.  In that moment, it was a reality I couldn't fathom, couldn't grasp.  I was sure she was mistaken.
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  • The Life of an Academy Athlete

    Andrew Wright, P.E. Teacher and Athletic Coach

    3:15: The bell rings.

    The typical student arrives at his or her locker with an afternoon to come, full with opportunities. Those opportunities span all ends of the spectrum from music lessons and language classes to after-school programs and service projects. Somewhere on that spectrum falls the possibility to engage in competition with teammates, opponents, and with oneself. While competition can be found in any number of ways, one form of competition separates itself at Fort Worth Academy, athletics.

    At 3:15, the teams of students who proudly take the title of Fort Worth Academy Athlete make their way from lockers to the locker-room to prepare for their next challenge of the day. Preparing to take the field, they switch modes of thought from academia to sport, from class to physical play. Each athlete prepares in his or her own way, though. Just as they make their unique mark in the classroom, each athlete takes on an equally individual role in his athletic team. Some take roles of leadership. Others may thrive as willful, capable teammates. Each role is embraced and positive from each member and for each member.

    How do these young men and women take such bold responsibilities willingly?

    Read More
< 2019

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